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Biden defends decision to visit Saudi Arabia, says rights are on his agenda. Biden will hold bilateral talks with Saudi King Salman bin Abdulaziz and his leadership team, including Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman on his visit to the Middle East.

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At least three killed in Iran province hit by water protests. Wealthy Khuzestan is Iran's main oil-producing region, but it is struggling with a persistent drought that last week sparked protests over a lack of water.

'We decide our foreign policy': Bangladesh reacts to Chinese warning over joining Quad. The reference to Quad and the undiplomatic manner in which Bangladesh was warned indicate Beijing’s deep annoyance with a grouping that intends to curtail its influence in the Indo-Pacific and areas that China considers its zone of influence.

India blocks China-made wireless device imports: Report. India has held up approvals for import of wifi modules from China for months, driving companies such as United States-based computer makers Dell and HP and China’s Xiaomi, Oppo, Vivo and Lenovo to delay product launches in a key growth market, two industry sources have told the Reuters news agency.

India’s Response to second wave is warning to other countries. The blindspots in India’s response to its second, devastating wave of coronavirus infections serve as a stark warning to other countries

In rare phone call, Erdogan and Saudi king agree to enhance ties. Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan discussed ways of enhancing ties with King Salman of Saudi Arabia, in a rare phone call since the killing of journalist Jamal Khashoggi, his office said.

Hundreds of US companies join Tesla to challenge Trump’s trade war tariffs

Lawsuits against the Trump administration have piled up over the last fortnight as some 3,500 American firms, including auto majors, retailers and pharmacies, were reported to challenge US tariffs on billions of Chinese goods.

Israel to enter full-blown lockdown, shut schools & close most non-essential businesses starting September 18 – report

Tel Aviv is poised to declare the whole country a “red zone” due to a spike in Covid-19 cases, limiting people’s movements to a 500-meter radius from home and closing all non-essential businesses that serve customers in person.

Brazilian state to test Russia's vaccine, eyes buying 50 million doses

The Brazilian state of Bahia has signed an agreement to conduct Phase III clinical trials of Russia's Sputnik V vaccine against COVID-19 and plans to buy 50 million doses to market in Brazil, officials have said.

Saudi Arabia to take on billions in debt to survive the oil price crisis. Saudi Arabia may have to borrow as much as $58 billion this year to cover a budget shortfall caused by the oil price slump, Bloomberg reports, citing Finance Minister Mohammed al-Jadaan

What Prince Harry can do for Meghan? Dame Jane Goodall, the British primatologist and a friend of Harry, said that Meghan Markle dislikes the sport and Harry is likely to quit hunting soon.

US President Donald Trump halt funding to the World Health Organisation (WHO) US President Donald Trump has told his administration to temporarily halt funding to the World Health Organisation (WHO) in the midst of the Covid-19 pandemic caused by the new coronavirus.

Trump says US has ‘passed the peak’ on new Covid-19 infections as daily death toll sets new record. As cases level off, however, the number of new fatalities has yet to reach its peak, with the US tallying 2,371 deaths so far on Wednesday alone, surpassing Tuesday’s record death toll, according to Reuters.

Lockdown India still appears to be staving off Covid-19 – but will it last? Europe is in the vise grip of the Covid-19 virus. The US is not far behind. Yet, the Indian subcontinent, inhabited by one quarter of humanity, has somehow (so far) managed to escape the worst effects. How has that been possible?

Sri Lanka cricketers donate funds for medical equipment. The Sri Lankan cricket team also joined the war against the coronavirus by donating money to buy a medical apparatus called video Laryngoscope that would aid treating diagnosed patients. The device is called a televised tool used to inspect a victim's throat and larynx, or voice box, to diagnose the cause of a cough or sore throat besides removing particles embedded or to take samples of tissue for examination.

Oil plunges in Asia as producers start price war. Oil plunged nearly 30% in a chaotic market opening, with main crude benchmarks Brent and WTI both trading below $35 a barrel amid fears of an all-out price war following the collapse of an output cut deal between Russian and OPEC.

Indian politician calls for burqa ban claiming ‘terrorists’ use them to hide from police. In an apparent reference to the recent violent protests against the controversial Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA) which have swept India, Singh claimed that criminals and “terrorists” were using the burqa to conceal their identities.

Trump's Middle East Plan. The US will recognise Israeli sovereignty over swathes of the West Bank, including Jewish settlements and much of the Jordan river valley

Iraqi security forces raid Baghdad protest site. Iraqi security forces have moved against the main anti-government protest site in central Baghdad. They fired live ammunition and tear gas as they began removing tents and concrete barriers near Tahrir Square and a bridge across the Tigris river, eyewitnesses say.

Meghan Markle's fight to protect son Archie contributed to royal exit: report. Meghan Markle had to fight for the protection of her and Prince Harry's son, Archie, and the pushback she and Harry received contributed to their decision to step down as working royals, according to a new report.

Australia's raging fires will create big problems for fresh drinking water. In the wake of the enormous fires that have razed huge swathes of drought-stricken Australia, scientists fear that when rains eventually fall, they will wash charred debris into rivers, dams, and the ocean, killing wildlife and even tainting the drinking supplies of major cities, such as Sydney.

US-Iran relations: A brief history. From the CIA-orchestrated overthrow of Iran's prime minister in 1953, to tension and confrontation under President Trump, a look back over more than 65 years of tricky relations between Iran and the US.

Meet Ali, 25. Boris Johnson's biggest challenger Ali Milani didn't speak English when he came to Britain from Iran at the age of five. Twenty years later, he's the biggest individual threat to Boris Johnson at this week's election.

North Korea carries out 'very important test' North Korea says it has carried out a "very important test" at a satellite-launching site. The KCNA state news agency said the results would be used to upgrade the country's strategic status. It provided no further details

Nusrat Jahan Rafi: Death penalty for 16 who set student on fire Those convicted of murder included the headteacher Nusrat had accused of harassment and two female classmates.

Turkey Syria offensive: Erdogan and Putin strike deal over Kurds. Turkey and Russia have agreed what they called a "historic" deal over military action against Kurds in northern Syria after a marathon diplomatic meeting.

Could Mr Trump be impeached? Republicans control the Senate, so Mr Trump would not be removed from office unless members of his own party turned on him

Assam NRC: What next for 1.9 million 'stateless' Indians? India has published the final version of a list which effectively strips about 1.9 million people in the north-eastern state of Assam of their citizenship.

Indonesia picks Borneo island as site of new capital The current capital, Jakarta, home to more than 10 million people, sits on swampy land.

Three Muslims lynched on pretext of stealing cow A mob in eastern India has beaten to death three men suspected of trying to steal cattle, police say.

Monsoon floods displace millions in India More than three million people have been displaced across north and north-eastern India amid monsoon rain that has cost lives and destroyed homes.

Indian police arrest priest & school teacher after they attempt to ‘sacrifice’ 3yo girl

Police in India have saved a 3-year-old girl from imminent death at the hands of her own relatives, as they planned to “sacrifice” the toddler after getting the green light from her parents, local media reports

Istanbul mayoral re-run: Erdogan's ruling AKP loses again Turkey's ruling party has lost control of Istanbul after a re-run of the city's mayoral election, latest results show.

India announces retaliatory trade tariffs against the US India has said that, from Sunday, it will impose tariffs on 28 US products, including almonds and apples.

Theresa May to resign as prime minister Theresa May has said she will quit as Conservative leader on 7 June, paving the way for a contest to decide a new prime minister.

Zakir Musa: India's 'most wanted' killed in Kashmir Zakir Musa, whose real name is Zakir Rashid Bhat, was a close aide of Burhan Wani, a charismatic Kashmiri militant leader, whose killing by security forces in 2016 sparked widespread protests.

Sri Lanka expels 200 Islamic clerics after Easter attacks Sri Lanka has expelled over 600 foreign nationals, including around 200 Islamic clerics, since the Easter suicide bombings blamed on a local jihadi group, a minister told AFP Sunday.

Explainer: Indonesia's election - the people, issues and preparations Most opinion polls give Widodo a double-digit lead but the opposition has disputed survey findings. Some recent surveys have shown Prabowo catching up.

Afghan talks: how big are the challenges? Taliban, in the interim period, want to continue their pressure on the Americans and the Afghan security forces.

China condemns U.S. for South China Sea freedom of navigation operation. The operation was the latest attempt to counter what Washington sees as Beijing's efforts to limit freedom of navigation in the strategic waters, where Chinese, Japanese and some Southeast Asian navies operate.

Why India is furious about a set of stamps. The foreign ministers of India and Pakistan were supposed to meet this week on the sidelines of the UN General Assembly in New York.

US Bases in Qatar Qatar will expand two air bases including Udeid, which hosts the largest US military facility in the Middle East

Indonesian Police Kill Dozens ahead of Asian Games.  Police in Jakarta have killed dozens of people as part of an escalating crackdown against petty criminals ahead of the Asian Games, in a campaign Amnesty International has described as “unnecessary and excessive”.

Uighurs in Chinese 'internment camps. Members of the Uighur community and others Muslims in China have been treated as "enemies of the state" and held in secret camps, a UN anti-discrimination body has said.

China mosque demolition sparks standoff in Ningxia Hundreds of Muslims in north-western China are engaged in a standoff with authorities to prevent their mosque from being demolished.

A new start or rerun in Korean Peninsula The highly choreographed meeting was performed by the two lead actors almost exactly as scripted. But many impromptu moments of congeniality, which drew laughs from the audience as well as from the actors themselves, highlighted the two sides’ eagerness to make the summit a success.

China May Get World's Largest Gas Field Because of U.S. Sanctions Against Iran Iran has threatened to give petroleum giant Total's stake in the South Pars gas fields to China if the French company could not secure protection from U.S. nuclear-related sanctions.

German pilots refuse to deport rejected asylum seekers Pilots in Germany are refusing to deport rejected asylum seekers, leading to the cancellation of more than 200 flights.

Hundreds of Muslim Uighurs Flee China for Fears of Persecution Those who escaped on Monday had no documents and their nationality could not be determined, a Thai immigration official told Khaosod newspaper.

China, UK and Army fail to remove Robert Mugabe Many political observers and fellow Zimbabweans had been expecting Mr. Mugabe to step down as president after nearly 40 years in power. But the embattled president gave a 20-minute televised speech that acknowledged problems in the nation — and he vowed to soldier on.

Hitler Wax Work Removed from Museum. The Nazi Germany leader was placed against a wall-sized banner depicting the Auschwitz-Birkenau extermination camp with the notorious “Arbeit macht frei” (Work sets you free) sign.

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CPEC - threats and potential - an assessment. Long-term political stability in Pakistan is key to success for Pakistan's regional economic pursuits. Pakistan's security situation suggest a troubled future unless sustainable democracy takes root.


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